SIM card swap fraudster sentenced to four years
The Mthatha Serious Commercial Crimes Court found guilty and sentenced Bongumusa Sibeko (50) on charges of theft.
This follows a series of fraudulent activities that occurred following what was believed to be a faulty mobile phone SIM card from a complainant.
According to Hawks spokesperson, Yolisa Mgolodela, on June 14, 2022, the fraud victim noticed that his phone had lost signal and reported the matter to the service provider, MTN, with the intention of obtaining a new SIM card.
“The complainant arrived at a local MTN office to be told that the SIM card in question is in fact active in another handset. Nevertheless, the sim swap was done on his mobile phone but there was still no network,” Mgolodela explained.
A month after the complainant lost network coverage, she went to the Standard Bank ATM to withdraw cash, only to find that her balance did not match the previous balance she had left. on his account.
“She then retrieved the bank statement and noticed many transactions made on her account without her knowledge. The money was transferred to various accounts that she did not know about,” Mgolodela said.
The matter has been reported to the Mthatha Serious Commercial Crimes Investigation Team for further investigation.
It paid off as it saw the arrest of a suspect arrested on March 10 in Gauteng.
“The suspect appeared in Palm Ridge Court on March 10, was transferred to Mthatha Serious Commercial Crimes Court and appeared on March 14, where he was released on R2,000 bail. The case was adjourned to March 31.
Investigations revealed that the victim suffered cash damages worth over R179,000.
Mgolodela further added that on March 31, 2022, Sibeko pleaded guilty to one count of theft and was convicted and sentenced to 4 years direct imprisonment.
Provincial Chief Major General Mboiki Obed Ngwenya once again commended the team for their painstaking efforts in the fight against commercial crime.